When Debbie Sorenson moved to Bella Vista 15 years ago, there was a welcome club run by volunteers that held monthly breakfasts.
The club disbanded about 10 years ago, and Sorenson began to see a need for a way for new residents to meet one another. In 2017 she came up with the idea for a meet and greet and approached POA COO Tom Judson, and he approved of the idea. Volunteers began holding meetings at Riordan Hall on a quarterly basis and later moved to the country club. From 2017 to 2019 they held the meetings on a quarterly basis at the country club from 10 to 11:30 a.m., and then last year in March they had to change to Zoom meetings because of the covid-19 pandemic.
Sorenson said the next meeting will be May 15, and she hopes the following one in August will be in person. To be invited to the Zoom meeting, residents should contact Sorenson at [email protected] When she gets the requests she replies with more information.
She said Judson and Mayor Peter Christie both participate in the meet and greets.
"The whole goal, my goal personally, was to introduce new residents to the POA and all the amenities that are offered here, introduce them to the city through the mayor and also to introduce them to the ACC (architectural committee). The important thing is we want them to distinguish between the three."
She said people often have difficulty understanding which entity is responsible for what. For example, she said, if a resident wants to change the color of the shingles on their home, they have to clear that with the ACC, not the POA. The POA is in charge of all the amenities as well as the water, she said.
Bella Vista property owners can purchase a $30 per year membership card that will get them into many of the amenities free, she said. Amenities include a gun range, swimming pool, workout facilities, dog park, baseball diamond, pickleball courts, lakes, walking trails, bike trails, etc.
"The main goal is to introduce all the new residents to all the wonderful amenities that we have in Bella Vista and let them ask any questions they may have of Tom and Peter," Sorenson said.